Dog crates are great for many reasons, but one of the best beauties of a collapsible dog crate is that it means that you can bring them along with you on holiday. Yay!
Whether your pup just needs a comfortable place to sleep during a drive or needs a place to stay during a flight, a crate has you covered.
The only issue is that crates are rather large and clunky, and unless you know how to collapse it, it’s going to take up a whole lot of space. You’re not going to enjoy a holiday if you’re constantly carrying around your dog crate, are you?
They can cause massive storage issues in the hotel or caravan, or wherever you choose to stay. This is especially true when they have to stay upright – they just get in the way.
That’s why I would always advise purchasing a collapsible crate so that it’s more compact and just causes less stress in general. But then there is always the dreaded job of actually collapsing it.
Contraptions have this tendency to try and be awkward and difficult, and if you’re unsure as to what you’re doing, it can be pretty time-consuming.
That is why in this article, we’ve provided you with simple step-by-step instructions so that you can easily and effortlessly get the job done.
Step-By-Step Guide To Collapsing A Dog Crate
Regardless of your type of crate, you should be able to follow along with these instructions to collapse it. The only exception would be a soft-sided dog crate.
1. Read The Instructions
While I can give you some clear details, nothing will help you quite like your instructions. You should always refer to your manufacturer’s guide before starting to collapse your crate.
This is because some crates may have specialist mechanisms or particular additional safety features for example.
If you can’t find your instructions, and we’ve all been there, then you can do a quick Google search for them or contact the manufacturer who should be able to refer you to a recent manual.
2. Close The Crate
Now that the crate is empty, you should find it pretty easy to close. You should find the latches for the crate located on the front and back doors, the left and right sides, along with openings at the top and bottom.
A few crates will also have an additional escape panel, if yours does, you’ll also want to check to see if this can be closed too.
You really want to double check that all doors have been closed and that the latches are secure otherwise you’ll find it really difficult to collapse the crate.
3. Folding Short Side Panels
Typically, wire crates have shorter panels. You’ll want to fold these toward the middle of your crate to make space for the longer panels.
Ensue the hinge is unlocked on the panels and then you can push these down too. They should be moved towards the floor.
4. Latches Of Shorter Side Panels
If you have a plastic crate, you may have latches on the shorter side panels. You’ll want to detach the lock that connects the shorter and longer panels together in this instance.
You can release the latch and then push down on the shorter panel.
5. Right & Left Sides
Once those shorter panels are down, you can focus on the larger left and right sides. These will fold down as long as you have unlocked the side latches.
To fold them down you just need to push them down slightly and then carefully place one side on top of the other.
Now, it’s imperative that you take care during this step as it can be quite easy to get your fingers stuck and that will definitely hurt.
And then all that’s left to do is secure the crate. You should find that your crate has either a hook or latch that you can use once it has been collapsed. Pushing each half of the latch/hook should be enough to fasten the crate.
The Different Types Of Dog Crates
There are quite a few different collapsible crate options out there but yours likely falls under one of the following categories. Let’s take a look.
- Plastic Dog Crates – These are more suitable for smaller to medium-sized dogs. They tend to have a carrying handle and a swinging door.
- Folding Wire Dog Crate – These are the more typical crates that you’ll find in most dog owners’ homes. They have great ventilation and are appropriate for most dog sizes.
- Heavy Duty Dog Crate – These are usually for larger and bigger dog breeds. They are very durable and extremely secure.
- Soft-Sided Dog Crates – These are most suitable for chilled-out and well-trained dogs that are small to medium-sized. They are lightweight and collapse very quickly.
- Furniture Dog Crates – These are more for the owner than the dog. They blend in seamlessly with furniture decor.
Cleaning The Crate
Before you start collapsing your crate, you’ll need to ensure that it is empty and clean. Thankfully, this is pretty easy to do. You’ll just need to remove anything that is inside it first.
This includes any toys, blankets, pillows, or food that may live in the crate. Once you’ve removed everything, it is usually good practice to then give it all a good clean.
Just ensure that you wash with non-chemical solutions for your pet’s safety. Then I would also recommend popping a thick absorbent mat into the bottom of the crate so that it’s protected against any accidents during travel.
And as easy as that, you’ve turned a bulky item into something super compact and easy for travel. As you can see, collapsing a crate really isn’t all that difficult.
I would advise familiarizing yourself with your crate, taking it apart and putting it back together, a couple of times before you go away so that you are well and truly a pro when the time comes.
That way, you’ll save yourself some extra time. And we all know, when you’re on holiday, every second counts!